Healthier Responses to Stress

Everyone gets stressed now and then - it's all about how you handle it

Credit: Flickr / Crashmaster007

Don’t let your stress get out of control

Stress is a fact of life, but how we react to it can mean the difference between coping effectively or being completely overwhelmed by it 

If you’ve been having trouble managing your stress, try keeping a journal to keep track of the things that cause you stress and how you respond to them.

Record how you felt, how you acted and what helped you cope in the situation. This simple exercise can be very helpful in terms of identifying the strategies that work for you.

Healthy ways to respond to stress can be divided into two groups:

Change the Stressful Situation

  • Learn to say no
  • Avoid people who cause you stress
  • Delegate chores
  • Learn to compromise
  • Practise effective time-management strategies
  • Organize your workplace and home
  • Stop putting unrealistic expectations on yourself

Change Your Response to the Stressful Situation

  • Is there a positive spin to the situation?
  • Will it matter next month?
  • Are your expectations unrealistic?

Since stress is inevitable, learning healthy coping strategies is critical to your mental and physical well-being. If stress continues to take the upper hand in your life, don’t wait to seek out professional help. See your doctor or a registered therapist.

Originally published in Wellness Matters, Canada Wide Media’s quarterly newsletter on health and wellness.